‘When I Grow Up’. What Careers Day taught me

Recently I realised that my life’s course, aged 16, had been decided on careers day by the ‘these are all the jobs you can do in life’ book.

 As I thumbed through the pages, I whittled out all the careers that I didn’t want to do.  All that was left was PILOT.
I fancied it, I think, because it was fast, it kicked ass and pretty much sounded like a very cool job!  All the rest of the jobs in the book I knew I didn’t want to do, so that was the result… I had my life’s options defined to me by a ten-page booklet! With the support of my family I remember ‘looking into’ it, writing to Virgin (who weren’t recruiting), paying £100 to attend a stewardess training course day in Harrogate and that’s where it ended.

Questions I have since asked myself: Did I really want to be a pilot or was it merely all I was left with and if so, what kind of a decision is that?

Whichever of those two answers I’m  immensely thankful I am where I am now, and have discovered the ‘real me’ and what I love mid thirties. The outcome for me wasn’t disastrous at all, but for some it might’ve been!

 ImageIt got me to thinking about the responsibility those of us with any kind of influence on the younger generations have.  It is vital we don’t put our preconceived ideals on them or make them fit the mould.  Can we take the time to watch them, to see what their passions are and then gently coach them through towards realising a job for themselves?

For us to be able to be comfortable with that, requires us to be okay being not necessarily ‘fitting in’ ourselves.  We need to be free to uncouple from what others would say our life should be like (however old we are) in order to begin to uncover what we want for our life.  In turn, if we help our children and the younger generations identify who they are… we keep that essence of what they love in tact despite challenges of life, school and raging hormones!

I vow to raise my daughter to be herself 100%, and, if come careers day there’s not a job description in the book that appeals to who she is, that we’ll come up with one ourselves!


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